Ivy-shaped geraniums: home care
Ivy-shaped geranium is rightly called pelargonium. She received this name for the similarity of her foliage with ivy leaves. Although the plant originates from the coast of the African continent, it has established itself as an indoor and ampelous plant. We will get acquainted with the common varieties of this geranium, the features of its successful maintenance, care and reproduction.
Botanical description of the plant
This type of pelargonium is a perennial shrub from the geranium family.
Its main features are set out in the table:
|Leaf shape||Tapered, five-lobed|
|Flower color||Different shades of pink and red, white, is heterogeneous|
Pelargonium pelargonium is perfectly used as an ampel plant on balconies and in flower pots. Its stems are able to grow up to a meter long, so it can be used as a ground cover plant.
The most interesting varieties and their groups, which can be found in the catalogs of online stores:
- "Crystal Queen f1" - An unpretentious variety that grows quickly and powerfully, even from seeds. The plant is strong, resistant to windy and rainy weather. The stems grow to 30 cm, bloom profusely and continuously. There are varieties with red and white flowers. To get a basket of ampelous flowers, 1-2 seeds are enough;
- Tornado F1 - may have red, pink and white flowers. It forms stems up to 30 cm long, blooms quickly, blooms long and plentifully even without the use of stimulants;
- Tuscany - its varieties look very decorative and bloom large, usually double flowers, collected in lush inflorescences-caps that last a month. May have different interesting colors of flowers. For example, the variety Toscana Renske has bright red flowers, but the other variety, Toscana Tomke, has a deep dark burgundy tone. There are types with variegated inflorescences - in the Toscana Nixe cultivar, flower petals have a bright pink border and a middle of a lighter, almost white color. The plant is compact, early flowering;
- Amethyst - blooms in large double flowers. It grows quickly and forms a basket;
- Crocodile - It is distinguished by an interesting variegated color of leaves with well-defined yellow veins. Coral or purple flowers;
- Jagky gauld - grows and branches rapidly, blooms magnificently. Has pale large large double flowers with pinkish or purple gentle tones;
- Icerose - compact plant, blooms with wonderful terry pink-like flowers of white color;
- Rouletta - has an original motley color of flowers with white petals having a bright pink fringing;
- Mrs. Martin - quickly forms a living basket and blooms with lush double flowers of light lilac or pink tones;
- Rhapsody - forms a lush bush with beautiful lush burgundy inflorescences that look great on a green background of glossy leaves.
Conditions for successful growing at home
This is an unpretentious plant, but to obtain high decorativeness, he needs to ensure proper care.
The ivy geranium is photophilous and well tolerates direct sunlight. Indoor, it grows well on the south window.If only the northern window is available for its cultivation, then the plant should be illuminated in the cold period, since it prefers a long daylight hours.
In the summer, it proved to be excellent on balconies and open-air loggias.
It grows optimally at a temperature of 20–25 ° C. In summer, it is not recommended to increase the temperature above 32 ° C, and in the cold, pelargonium is kept at 7–18 ° C. It is best suited to a temperature of 15 ° C in winter.
The plant tolerates drought well, but does not respond well to excess water or stagnation.
Important! Spraying geranium ivy is unacceptable! This can lead to rot - the plant does not tolerate moisture.
With the onset of cold weather, the number of irrigations is reduced to 1 time in 14 days.
At home, you should bring the living conditions closer to natural, and then in the summer, pelargonium will delight with lush flowering.
In the hot season, it must be provided with daily, but scarce, surface irrigation, and if the soil is not dry, it is better to transfer the watering to the next day. Watering in the winter depends on the temperature in the room, and is usually carried out 1-2 times for 14 days.
Water the geranium with settled water at room temperature.
When the plant is actively flowering, it needs to be fed weekly with fertilizers containing potassium and phosphorus, which provide lush and long-lasting flowering. In the autumn-winter time, you can not feed it at all, or add organic matter.
For healing, as well as providing a decorative look and lush flowering, all pelargoniums are cut off.
The ivy varieties are trimmed during the fall, when it gets colder and the pots are removed from the street. The dried stems are cut completely, the rest are cut, leaving 7 sheets. The axillary shoots are cut, but the root shoot is not touched.In early spring, if the plant has grown well in warm room conditions, pruning is done again. During the period of active flowering, dried inflorescences and leaves are removed, thinned out, if necessary, old, woody and diseased stems are removed.
These procedures are performed using a well-sharpened knife.
Did you know? The volcanic geranium perfectly accepts feeding during the flowering period in the form of diluted milk in this ratio - 2 parts of water are taken for 1 part of milk.
Features of winter care
When pelargonium is brought into the room during the onset of cold weather, it is necessary to create the following recommended conditions for it:
- find a cool place with a temperature of 7–15 ° C;
- to provide the plant with sufficient lighting and, if necessary, to illuminate with a phytolamp or fluorescent lamp;
- reduce watering and stop feeding.
Room conditions do not always allow you to create such a cool temperature, and the plant is often completely cut off, put on a transparent bag and sent to winter on the insulated balcony. Sometimes after autumn pruning, it is left on the window of the stairwell, occasionally watering it.
The best way of wintering geraniums is considered to be ivy harvesting in August of apical cuttings with their subsequent rooting. A woody plant is usually thrown away.
In the spring, a young plant is recommended to be transplanted into a new nutrient ground. To do this, you can prepare a soil mixture of sand, humus, sod-leaf land, peat. This pelargonium loves nutritious soils.
The old plant can be replanted less often - once every 2-3 years, when the roots become crowded in the tank. It should be planted in such a pot, the sides of which will be a couple of centimeters from the roots on all sides. If the volume of the old container is large and the plant is still not crowded, you can limit yourself to changing the top soil and top dressing.
A transplant pot is taken a little larger than the root system.The plant is carefully removed from the old pot and freed from the ground, remove the roots fused with drainage. Then it is placed in a pot and covered with prepared soil.
This plant must be periodically updated, because with age it begins to lose its decorative effect.
Propagate ivy geranium in two ways:
Cuttings are made in early spring or at the end of the summer period. For this purpose, the top of the vertical shoots is carefully separated in length of about 7-10 cm. It is desirable that the processes have at least four leaves.
First, the cuttings are dried for 12 hours and treated with coal powder. Then, rooting in the undermined soil to a depth of about 4 cm is carried out. For this procedure, it is good to take plastic cups. Such processes do not cover from above. After planting in the soil they are abundantly watered, and subsequent irrigation is carried out infrequently and moderately.
The optimum temperature range of 20–22 ° C is maintained for approximately 30 days. Then there is a transplant in a pot.
Another method of propagation are seeds. They can be sown from April to November. In the cold season, sprouts that have appeared need additional lighting to provide daylight hours of 12 hours.
Soil can be purchased or prepared independently: peat, sand and disinfected soil are mixed for this. The seed material is deepened by no more than 0.5 cm. On top of it is covered with a plastic film and spraying is carried out regularly.
Important! Only the propagation by cuttings can preserve all the properties of hybrid varieties of ivy geraniums. When choosing propagation by seeds from a parent flower, not all properties can go to children. At the same time, experts argue that geranium grown by seed method gives an abundant color.
Negative environmental influences and improper care can weaken the plant and lead to various diseases. Some pests can also damage this pelargonium.
Consider diseases of the ivy geranium:
- Mushroom Botrytis. It manifests itself with increased humidity in the room in the form of grayish spots with a fluff on top, round or V-shaped. Brown stains also appear on the stems, which can turn to flowers and cause them to fall. On fallen flowers, grayish cannabis formations will be visible. With such a problem, the soil is completely changed to a new, disinfected one, the sick part of the bush is cut off, and the rest is sprayed with fungicides.
- Root rot (Pythium mushroom). Causes damage to the root system, in which there is a slowdown, yellowing and darkening of the lower part of the plant. With high humidity, a grayish-white coating may appear. In this case, the soil is changed to a more permeable one, the diseased parts are removed, the fungicides are treated and the nitrogen fertilizers are no longer abused.
- Bacterial disease. It appears in the form of brown spots that initially appear on the underside of the leaf, and then more extensively affect the leaves. The stem begins to darken and die. The plant is sprayed and regularly weeded, making sure that there is no stagnation of water.
- Rust sheet. It is caused by a fungus and manifests itself in the appearance of yellowish spots and formations with spores having a rusty color. Leaves begin to fall prematurely. Apply fungicides and regularly weed, remove the affected areas.
- Alternariosis and cercosporosis (leaf spot). It is a fungal disease and manifests itself in the form of vesicles on the lower part of the leaves, which eventually turn brown with yellowish inclusions that are similar to salt. With severe neglect, chlorosis and leaf decay occur. Remove affected parts and spray.
Pelargonium affects not only diseases, but also pests:
- Ticks Recognized by light yellow blotches on the leaves and subsequent wilting of the plant. Usually appear in the heat and dry air. At the initial defeat, it is enough to use household soap and mineral oil. For a more extensive lesion, it is necessary to use chemicals such as Lightning, Ditox, Bi-58, and others.
- Aphid. Signs of appearance are torsion and yellowing of the leaves. Affected leaves are torn off or treated with a soapy solution. Apply chemical preparations "Spark", "Actara", as well as tobacco dust.
- Thrips. You can notice them by cork formations on the underside of the sheet. Over time, deformation processes occur in the leaves, spots appear on the flower petals. To combat such insects, sticky blue traps are used, as well as chemicals such as Actara and Biotlik.
- Snails (slugs). Inflict damage to the plant, eating young leaves and stems. The reason for the appearance is high humidity, rain. To eliminate their appearance, gravel or egg shells with sharp pieces are poured around flower beds, using special granules and traps.
- Caterpillars. They feed on leaves, gnawing small holes. Such pests are collected and destroyed manually, you can also use the appropriate insecticides.
Did you know? The words geranium and pelargonium are translated from Greek as “crane” and “stork”. Their fruit-boxes are very similar in shape to the beaks of these birds.
But in order to provide the desired lush flowering, it is necessary to provide her with proper care and care.